Oil-Based or Water-Based Contrast for Hysterosalpingography in Infertile Women

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Abstract

BACKGROUND

Pregnancy rates among infertile women have been reported to increase after hysterosalpingography, but it is unclear whether the type of contrast medium used (oil-based or water-soluble contrast) influences this potential therapeutic effect.

METHODS

We performed a multicenter, randomized trial in 27 hospitals in the Netherlands in which infertile women who were undergoing hysterosalpingography were randomly assigned to undergo this procedure with the use of oil-based or water-based contrast. Subsequently, couples received expectant management or the women underwent intrauterine insemination. The primary outcome was ongoing pregnancy within 6 months after randomization. Outcomes were analyzed according to the intention-to-treat principle.

RESULTS

A total of 1119 women were randomly assigned to hysterosalpingography with oil contrast (557 women) or water contrast (562 women). A total of 220 of 554 women in the oil group (39.7%) and 161 of 554 women in the water group (29.1%) had an ongoing pregnancy (rate ratio, 1.37; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.16 to 1.61; P<0.001), and 214 of 552 women in the oil group (38.8%) and 155 of 552 women in the water group (28.1%) had live births (rate ratio, 1.38; 95% CI, 1.17 to 1.64; P<0.001). Rates of adverse events were low and similar in the two groups.

CONCLUSIONS

Rates of ongoing pregnancy and live births were higher among women who underwent hysterosalpingography with oil contrast than among women who underwent this procedure with water contrast. (Netherlands Trial Register number, NTR3270.)

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